Skip to main content

tv   Book TV  CSPAN  February 20, 2011 11:00am-12:00pm EST

11:00 am
first of all, i'm not a psychologist, i don't like to play one even on tv, but it felt as though he -- this isn't just a gender thing, okay? it can happen to men as well as women. and it can happen to women who think of themselves as independent if they get trapped in this, this isolation which comes back to why it shouldn't be just a woman's issue. ..
11:01 am
>> the second wave that feminine movement made popular in order to in essence rollback the gains that second wave feminism has made and that "the feminine mystique" was a cultural touchstone for. >> we are living in such a complicated time. this is one of the challenges. the challenges that gender no longer is the master status, that even in an arena of our political system that has always said, women should not work when they have kids. sarah palin feels entitled to go out and run for vice president. that is a victory of feminism in itself, it really is. yet at the san time she is opposing many of the other kinds of reforms that we think are necessary to consolidate women's positions such as work, family.
11:02 am
there was an interesting debate insulate about who gets to call themselves a feminist. some people said that since it was against abortion she could not call herself a feminist. i don't agree with that. at think that if your moral line, if you believe that abortion is murder you could be a feminist and oppose abortion. however, you would have to then support contraceptive choices and the development of child care, good, quality child care for unwanted kids who come into the world. so that is, to my mind, a little more complicated to say who is a feminist and two is not. and even what is a feminist demand? sometimes i feel uneasy sane, i'm a feminist when i'm talking to a group of working-class guys who want to know, you know, what am i tried to offer them. they have tried to be good
11:03 am
husbands, fathers, providers. yet they're falling behind. so i think we are in a situation where developing tactics and strategies and alliances is a lot more difficult when it was just against a series of laws that we could all come together on. now i'm our differences about class and race and politics and religion and region are coming to the four. yes. >> actually, i was just calling to say that we need to end it here. of wanted to thank you, stephanie coontz and everybody for coming. wanted to thank you, rebecca, for the introduction and a wanted to remind everybody that we have "the feminine mystique" for sale. maybe you will sign both. >> and not going to sign. that would be way to -- >> in any event, thank you very
11:04 am
much and i hope everybody has a really good evening. >> for more information on stephanie coontz and her work, visit stephanie coontz dot com. >> c-span local content of vehicles are traveling the country visiting cities and towns as we explore our nation's history and some of the authors who have touched upon it through their work. this weekend on book tv rickie to downtown indianapolis for a look at the new kurt vonnegut memorial library. >> perhaps the greatest american writer. he was a world war ii veteran. he was a hoosier. he was a centrist. he was a political activist. he was a husband, a father, a friend, a friend to his fans pretty good right back to his fans. he wrote more than 30 pieces of work including plays, novels,
11:05 am
short stories, some of his more familiar books are slaughterhouse five, which is perhaps his most famous, breakfast of champions, cat's cradle and many others. vonnegut always brought in his midwestern roots and often about indiana and indianapolis specifically. if i may read ," many people ask me why should this library be here in indianapolis. i have many different answers. and i found this great "the says all my jokes are indianapolis, all my attitudes and indianapolis. my had knives are indianapolis. this if i ever severed myself from indianapolis i would be out of business. what people like about me is indianapolis. we took that as a green light to go and ahead and establish the
11:06 am
fought to get library here in indianapolis. we have an art gallery, museum, reading room, a gift shop, and i would like to share details about these with you today. this is the kurt vonnegut timeline. if you would allow me how would like to read the "at the top of this beautiful painting which was created by the artist chris king and by avon get scholar named rodney allen. both of these individuals live and louisiana. the "reeves all moments past, present, and future hallways have it existence. we can look at all the moments just the way we can look at a stretch of the rocky mountains. they can see how permanent on the moments are. it is just an illusion we have had here on earth that once the moment is gone it is gone
11:07 am
forever. something that is unique about our time line is we actually start on the right side and move to the left and other than the left and moved to the right. when things we wanted to mention about this ," we hope that fight it would know that while he may think that -- may have thought that once of llamma is gone and is gone forever, we like to think that the moment of curt wanted will live on forever here at the bottom elaborate. he went to cornell university. he was studying chemistry. he did not plan to go into architecture like his father. he did move into a science career and discovered at cornell that he was not very much interested in doing that. he enlisted in the army during world war two. would like to point out a moment here on the timeline that is
11:08 am
very important in the life of kurt vonnegut. 1944. dying from an overdose, probably intentional, not a whole and sleeping pills. he enters combat in europe. he is captured by germans in belgium during the battle of the bowls. san he is riding in a boxcar with other african pows to dresden, is supposedly safe german city unlikely to be bombed. so dresden was this beautiful cultural city that was not a military target. as a bonded road and on a train he was able to view this beautiful city and then he was placed in a slaughterhouse with the rest were held. slaughterhouse was slaughterhouse five. over here we have an exhibit that we call the dresden exhibit, but it is really just world war two experience that became so important in his
11:09 am
riding and his world he later in life. i'll start with his -- if out of bed was taken right after he was released as a prisoner or along with fellow prisoners. we also have his purple heart that was donated by his son, mark vonnegut, to us. he received a purple heart for frostbite. kurt vonnegut was embarrassed to have received the purple heart for frostbite. so many of his friends had suffered from other types of physical problems. we have a signed first edition of a book slaughterhouse five. this is important because slaughterhouse five is probably the most well-known book written by kurt vonnegut of the 30 some pieces of writing that he
11:10 am
completed. this is possibly the most famous -- excuse me, famous. why was slaughterhouse five famous? but me give you a little bit of history about what happened in germany and my impressions of why it affected people so much. on it, as i read, was taken to the slaughter house while he was in dresden. the allies bombed dressed in. so his own countrymen as well as his allies bombed the city. it was a horrible bombing. it would be literally a firestorm. tens of thousands of people were killed. these were noncombatants, women and children and old people. vomited was cast as to go out and remove the bodies from these burning buildings. he also was required to bury the
11:11 am
bodies of women and children. that affected his life tremendously. he came back from his world war ii experience being completely against war. he was searching for peaceful resolution to conflicts and supported diplomacy and other approaches to solving problems. i will also point out, a photo that was taken after he came back from the war, he got married to jane cox wanted to was from indianapolis law. this photo was taken on their honeymoon. you can see he is in uniform. funded and jane had three children, march, itt, and manny. then many years later his sister, alice, died just a day or two after her husband had
11:12 am
died. a freight train accident. alice had four children, and three of them can to live with of on a family. they had acquired a large household, seven children. vomited at that time was writing books that at that time were less familiar, but he had published several books and articles for magazines as well as working a job as a car salesman for saab. the experience in writing about justin and what happened to him was a tremendously difficult. it to a camp about 20 years to be able to publish the book slaughterhouse five. his wife had encouraged him to write it. she worked as editor.
11:13 am
she asked questions and got clarity on issues and helped him to retrieve a lot of those memories that he had repressed. because of the family situation with the addition of more children and the success that was coming with the publishing a slaughterhouse five his marriage with jane was rocky. his daughter, easy, had mentioned about a month ago that experience and the publishing of a book and all that seemed monica contributed to the marriage. and at that time thought it had meant the photographer joe simmons and eventually married joe simmons. she was his second wife and the only other person.
11:14 am
over here to what we call a political activity exhibit. bonded continued to talk about his interest in finding a peaceful solutions to conflicts. i think that is another inning that made him very popular during the vietnam years and after. this data which was given to us by the new york times was taken during the first goal for. there is bound to get out there that come the university. i assure that it was a large crowd. you can see heaved would attract a large crowd. i have been told that he was like a rock star coming to his defense speeches in large
11:15 am
auditoriums and always filling the auditorium. here we are in the art gallery portion of our library. i would like to take you over here and show you. a signed "given to us by his artistic collaborator. it says, i don't know what it is about hoosiers, but wherever you go there is always a hoosier doing something very important there. this boat was in the book can scribble. it is a very funny exchange of the main character has with a fellow traveler on a plan. that fellow traveler. next we have possibly his most famous piece of artwork. ivana get in his humor associated the * with the anatomical feature.
11:16 am
we actually have used this * in other pieces of art exhibits including our timeline which you may have thought had stars in the skies. they're actually the * in the sky. we also have left is no way to treat an animal. this is the tombstone for his famous character who appeared in many of his books. it is understood that kilgore trout is based on what it himself. interestingly bought it also happened to die at the age of 34. >> what did kirk fought against dive from?
11:17 am
>> the collapse. he fell down the steps of his city home. he went into a, and never came out. he often joked that pall mall cigarettes would kill him. he sued the makers of pall mall because the warning label on the cigarette package said that they would kill him and they had not yet done so. he actually happened to be smoking pall mall while standing on the steps. so two pieces of our work for created. one of our honor board members to my close friend. that actually both shared a close friend here wrote the introduction for the last book that cannot. but these two pieces of art, the first on the occasion of kurt
11:18 am
vonnegut's bird that was created in 2003. and in the second was created when she found out that followed had died. that was 2007. we are in the front of the kurt vonnegut library in the of the galleries around. we have had the typewriter used in the 1970's. this was donated to us by his daughter. he rode many of his more familiar books during the 1970's we are happy to have this typewriter. he was not a fan of high-technology. he did not use a computer. he referred -- prefer to use a typewriter. he likes to work in his home on
11:19 am
an office chair on a coffee table. he would slump over his typewriter. vomited would spill out into the world every day. he talked about how he had learned that you could buy postage stamps on the internet. he just thought that was horrible because he would not have the everyday experience of going to the post office. those everyday experiences and the people he encountered during his talks with the basis for some of the stories. he met a number of really interesting characters. going out and meeting people was a way for him to talk gavin the material for his books. but it is time was because these issues still have the same.
11:20 am
we are still suffering with war and disease. famine, environmental issues. the immune system, trying to get rid of you. he felt we should preserve the plant. these issues, it does not work like a viable solutions to these problems. i think it is. >> c-span local content vehicles of traveling the country visiting cities and towns as we look at our nation's history and some of the authors to have written about it. for more information go to c-span.org / lcd. >> this is if of yuri 23rd visit booktv.org at 7:00 p.m. to watch bruce rendell live on-line
11:21 am
talk discussing his book. simply go to booktv.org and click on the watch button under the events information in the future program section of the page. also, follow us on twitter at book tv for up-to-the-minute schedule updates on future live on-line programming throughout each week. >> until your 16th of this year the borders bookstore group declared bankruptcy. joining us now on book tv to discuss the impact of this bankruptcy is sarah wind, the news editor of public marketplace. how did borders get to the point of declaring bankruptcy? >> well, it has been a long time in coming. certainly the last three years in particular, quarter after quarter borders has been losing money. they have also gone through a number of management changes. they have gone through something
11:22 am
like four ceos in the past four years. but the story can also date back to the beginning of the 21st century, i suppose, things like their website to amazon in 2001 and did not reclaim it until 2008. the strategy was never at the san level as amazon. it always kind of scenes that borders was operating a few steps behind every other retailer and combining all the additional factors that have been impacting the publishing industry, especially on the print side, in combination with various managerial mismanagement. it really did not come as a particular surprise that borders declared chapter 11. >> you mentioned the amazon connection. what exactly did borders do with amazon and in your view what kind of mistake was that? >> wow, to reiterate back in
11:23 am
2001 when borders had its own website instead of letting their own books be sold directly they passed that amazon. in a sense there are giving up revenue to their competitors in order to the essentially make certain things easier, but in doing that it was something of a devil's bargain because they did not essentially own their own on-line property. by the time that they changed direction they had a new ceo who said this was not a very good idea. planning it in 2008. i've been amazon had already introduced the kendall. barnes and noble snuck was already in the works. it would not be introduced until 2009. that is when borders developed its own e-book strategy in selling some additional e-readers. there were never able to catch up in terms of appropriate market share. >> what happens to the borders
11:24 am
e-book reader? >> well, in the e-books that have been bought through borders website are perfectly safe. also interesting that the other partner and australia which incidently franchises the borders name for various bookstores have also declared bankruptcy over there. so i'm hopeful that the assertions are true, but i think it will be interesting to see if, in fact, the e-books that people bought through borders sides are saved and can be reclaimed and red. >> borders has about 642 big box stores across the country. how many of the closing? >> they are closing 200, and the going out of business sales are, in fact, starting tomorrow. i believe the liquidation sales will be between 20 and 40 percent off. those are already going to be in the works.
11:25 am
they have actually started shutting down cafes at the superstores. we will be very apparent walking into those 200 stores that have been designated for closure. you will see the going out of business sale signs and be able to get the books, cds, dvd is, and other appropriate merchandise. >> why is it that barnes and noble has been able to maintain its big box strategy? is it all about the e-book? >> i don't believe it is. i think with respect -- it may come down to this, which is barnes and noble certainly the most recently are put at the top but people who value books more than anything else. with respect to borders, especially since there has been such a tremendous turn of management changes, they brought in people from outside companies have had experience in general retail him may not have realized that their experience and not necessarily translate into what
11:26 am
is appropriate for the book business. the book business is very quirky and not always the best fit with respect to what public companies in particular need. for example, demanding higher and higher profits. uprights on a very tight margin. 1 percent is about average. your lucky to get 3%. so as a result this uncomfortable fed operated by people who were not as experienced with how the book business works probably added to their troubles. >> bonnie look at the brick and mortar business of booksellers what do you see in the future given what has happened? >> it is interesting when you say that. after some to believe more and more that we may also be witnessing the natural end of the chain bookstore business, which essentially started in the late 80's and early 90's when borders expanded, barnes
11:27 am
and noble expanded and we started to it have massive superstores tested along. some of them were a part of malls, but most of them were entities that you could drive up to and park your car. comfy chairs and be part of a greater experience and browsing for books. and in hindsight i do wonder if, perhaps, we were fooling ourselves that this could last as long as it did. maybe 20 years was the natural life cycle. we will see, especially of digital's sales keep going, perhaps a greater preponderant its of smaller independent stores. a number of them have opened. certainly they think many of the debates that have been talked about, but the ones that have opened and had a certain business acumen or really try to engage with in their communities and also a small the-book strategy seemed to have the best chance for survival. we will hopefully see more of those.
11:28 am
the system is going to change. it will certainly impact how publishers, perhaps, the authors and what advances their pain and what books will be visible. but to send that the shrinking of the chain bookstore business means that book industry is dead is a cut like -- connection i would be deeply uncomfortable in making. there are too many signs that are pointing toward more optimistic waters. >> you are some of borders biggest creditors? what have they said since their filing. >> well, on the unsecured creditors' side the biggest one is the penguin group, which i believe is of 41 million. after that most of the major publishers. for example, simon schuster is of 33 million. somewhere around the mid 30 million range. macmillan and so on and so forth. i believe the only publisher that has issued a statement the
11:29 am
spring went. others have stayed mom with respect to what is happening. of course there are the larger secured creditors which are bank of america which held a credit agreement. distil of almost 200 million. i believe ge capital, almost 50 million off of their own agreement as well. they have to pay off the banks, their biggest publishers pitted of course landlords are trying to get whatever they can as well as additional creditors. so all told i believe borders those about 300 or so million to vendors, and they still have to figure out how they're going to be paid. >> can in your view borders emerge from bankruptcy? its remaining stock of stores become a profitable company? >> i think it would be wonderful to see them emerge as a smaller, leaner, more profitable company. i also believe that many of the factors that have enabled them
11:30 am
to go into bankruptcy may not be so kind and for giving. to my mind there are a little too much concordance with what happened when they went into chapter 11 administration in late 2008 going to the courts realizing the did not have an appropriate business plan. numerous reports have indicated that publishers are not terribly happy with what borders seems to have in mind. their top priority, for example, seems to be highlighting the plus card. as customers come in and that this company is in trouble do they really want to redeem their cards or sign up for a in a company that they may feel does not have a future? so i think unless borders has a really rock-solid strategy as to how they're going to survive they may suffer the same fate as circuit city. at the same time i don't think we are going to know for several months at the earliest.
11:31 am
>> news editor of publishers marketplace. thank you for joining us on book tv. >> thank you for having me. >> next, lawrence kaplan recalls the life of homer lea, an american jew who traveled to china to participate in the boxer rebellion and became an adviser to sun yat-sen. after 17 discusses his book as part of the annual association of the u.s. army meeting at the washington convention center in washington d.c. the program is just under a half-hour. >> good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. thank you for being here. i would like to do a pretty quick overview about why youfy? might be interested in reading my book. you will know a lot more. if you enjoy reading biographies of people who helped shape world events i can guarantee you will enjoy reading about the exploits
11:32 am
of homer lea, an american soldier of fortune. his life was stranger than that found in romantic fiction. he earned an international reputation as a man of mystery, a soldier of fortune, writer, and geopolitical strategist. since his death in 1912 he is pretty much been an orphan of history. during his lifetime he was prominent, well known, had an international reputation. he actually did influence events of the time and helped shape some world events after his death. i would like to give you a quick overview of how his career is divided up. part of it has to do with working with the chinese and asian and part of it has to do with being a writer. first and foremost the chinese piece. a five ft. three hunchback who loved reading military history. in 1899 he was a student at stanford university. with his disability he figured he would have a career in law.
11:33 am
he had an adventurous spirit and some opportunities that many of his colleagues didn't. he actually take advantage of some of them. what i mean by that is that the fellow on the left, k'ang yu-wei, was the principal adviser to the emperor of china and 1898. of westernize reforms. wanted to help westernize china and advance forward. there was a huge conservative backlash in china and the emperors had a palace coup and faced the emperor under arrest. that's fine. chinese politics k'ang yu-wei left for the price on his head establishing a chinese society called protect the emperor association with branches all over the world. he was calling to launch a large-scale military operation in china to free the emperor and
11:34 am
restore him to power. now, 1899 when a branch of this organization was established in san francisco homer lea heard about it, was interested, and approached the chinese telling them he was a brilliant military strategist. he told them he was a relative of robert e. lee. they thought that was wonderful. this american strategist with great credentials to was not a relative of robert e. lee. they hired him to help organize and train this ramshackle army they were putting together in china. in the summer of 1900 he went to china, got on the army which is not really a former army by today's standards, and wandered around china not accomplishing much. this coincided with the boxer rebellion. a lot of discord and activity. the military was crushed by the
11:35 am
government. he left china and came back to the united states. next a set of going back to china and leading resurrected forces, and the military force, he set up a training scheme and america, a covert training plan across american cities, across the nation over 2,000 chinese joint military schools. in reality it was a thin veil for training a covert army. supposed to teach conventional english, math, social studies, this, that, and the other. in reality they just had drill instructors that or formal soldiers for the u.s. army to the bought uniforms day after themselves and uniforms of it very similar to u.s. army uniforms. this talk about the ego for a dragon. the eagle on the buttons for a dragon. other than that they looked like u.s. army soldiers. well, the emperor of china died
11:36 am
in 1908. his training scheme came to the attention of the public. that kind of fell through. his next effort involved a conspiracy. the person in the middle. one of the most distinguished chinese in america. the first graduate of yale university from china sponsored numerous chinese coming to america. a former chinese minister to the net the state's. he believe in reform. they put together what is called the red dragon conspiracy, a conspiracy to launch a revolution, carving out two provinces of southern china to make their own republic. absolutely incredible. they approached american businessmen for funding and finance. too risky a proposal. it just so happened that homer
11:37 am
lea turned to be in office. in 1909 he read a very successful book discussing american defense and principally have the japanese might invade and possibly attack california. out talk about that a little later. it's called "the valor of ignorance." it came out in 1909 to rave reviews. in 1910 when the red dragon conspiracy was foundering homer reputation wind up to the offices but the revolutionary on the right. he wanted to overthrow the entire manchu dynasty and take control of all of china. a number of revolutionary attempts. he became the principal foreign adviser. in the summer -- excuse me, in the fall of 1911, actually the
11:38 am
anniversary of this month in october. october 10th of 1911 revolution started that actually would overthrow the manchu dynasty. returned to china in late 1911 to become the first president of the chinese republic beyond their wildest dreams instead of going to china directly, manchu dynasty was an american at the time in colorado. he could have just gone to california and taken it shipped to china. fighting germany getting medical treatment for his eyes. you get the international connections. go to london, contact washington commended as funding. we need funding. homer lea met at eight in london. from there they were unsuccessful in getting
11:39 am
financial backing. he went on that ship. he had every expectation of becoming the chief of staff of the new chinese army. here is somebody with no formal military experience. he had a military uniform that made him look like a general, had written a book talking about geopolitics and strategy and defending america. now he was on the verge of capping his career with something of napoleonic stature. he get to china. the americans did department told him in no uncertain terms as an american national he could not be the head of the chinese army. he was somewhat embittered about this. his failing health came back. into a fury he suffered a severe stroke. well, he went back to california with every expectation of regaining his health and rejoining sun yat-sen. sun yat-sen by this time had
11:40 am
given up the presidency to avoid civil war and led a chinese general taken for the presidency. homer lea died in november of 1912. that phase of his career was pretty short-lived. he reached the pinnacle of his desires and goals to be a real general of a real army. he came very close. along the way he embarked on a number of different adventures with chinese performers and revolutionaries. his next -- excuse me. as you can see here, these are some voters of homer lea in various military and see the military guard. the one on the left is when he came back to china right after the box rebellion. the middle fatah would have been around 25 or 26. taken the same time as the photo on the right in military uniform. as an american lieutenant
11:41 am
general uniform removing the eagles and replacing them with taggants. this photo is in all over the country. if he did not know any better you would think he was an american military officer similar photos and both books. no reason to believe he does not a legitimate officer, albeit a very young looking one. there is a foot of troops training in los angeles in broad daylight. some of the chinese troops there. the fellow in the white shirt, you see on the ride. at that time he held a commission to the california militia. he used to be a member of the fourth cavalry regiment where homer lea drew upon members out of fort riley after they'd demobilized from the spanish-american war and philippine insurrection. there were hired to be his jealous directors. in this case by actually get a malicious. that is him and the white shirt.
11:42 am
this was supposed to be a covert operation. actually, people in the american government knew about it. he met president roosevelt. he gave a wink to this training scheme, but various elements of the government and state and local government did investigate this much to the chagrin of homer lea and company. that was the very last thing they wanted. that really helped close down this covert military transpiration, front-page headlines like that. psst tow, the other part of his career, as i just indicated, had to do with homer lea as a writer i don't know about you all here, this is my first book, and i am proud to have done it and put a lot of work into it. i have several advanced degrees the show i know what i am doing. not the case with homer lea. after he came back for china this college dropout in addition to working with the chinese decided he wanted to be an
11:43 am
author. this was published in 1908. his first book. it was considered at the time a really good read, exciting romance about china. at the time it was considered the first novel written about china to the this was one of the very few westerners that would most people were my and engineers commissioners, not writing spicing novels with people's lives running off with mandarins and the like. that is what this was about. so these three books, have talked about them in turn. there were his major works. the vermilion pencil, there were plans to make that into a stage play the fall through. after homer least that it was made into a silent film in 1922. that fauteuil you see on the right, the japanese actor producer, this is one of his key
11:44 am
towns. an american actress with him by his side. so his first book became popular and then made it into a movie. well, this is his crowning achievement. this 1909 book catapulted homer lea into fame beyond his wildest dreams as an author. this is what he is most known for. this is the book that is way beyond his life and legacy. this is the one of talk about in more detail. when he was living in california trying to get some of his chinese schemes going he was involved with several influential california businessmen. they, in turn, new some pretty influential former army officers. lieutenant-general, former chief of staff of the army retired in los angeles, and so did major-general joseph story, depicted on the right as a colonel. he was the former chief of artillery. they both run kanaan
11:45 am
introductions. with those introductions, if you wore a u.s. army uniform you want to read this book. if you were stationed in the philippines in particular because it had a theoretical plans and maps and have to invade the philippines. from 1909 until pearl harbor just about every officer in the u.s. army built about this book and read this book. general macarthur himself. general macarthur credited at homer lea in this book with helping him formulate policies for defending the philippines. this book was significant. well, a homer lea dedicated it to the secretary of war on the lower left. he met once. in washington california congressman james mccracken was using the book and holding it up in the halls of washington saying we have some relief big insecurities and in need to pay particular attention to the west
11:46 am
coast. so this inspired the army to be luck. as per the army to put on more against the potential japanese invasion. putting more games together. and homer lea book was considered a new bible, if you will, for people in america concerned about defense. for those of you who are familiar with geopolitical writing at the time and naval rider in the 1890's wrote the first really geopolitical book about defending america's interest militarily. that is about the navy. homer lea wrote his book about land warfare. this is the next day connect the dots geopolitical put in american history. this is a game changer. very influential. the japanese went to school why it. the germans raided. europeans read it. very influential. well, as i said, the japanese
11:47 am
red this. i don't have a lot of citations from the japanese, just a few bits and pieces. i can tell you, the feeling is that everybody in the high command. the japanese didn't start taking seriously the americans as a tyrannical adversary. that is documented. that is the same year this book cannot. it does so happened, as i mentioned and there, general macarthur and his staff for the book. by chance the general who was married to the publisher of time life magazine without visiting the philippines before pearl harbor. she was being entertained by a story by the head of general macarthur's intelligence, her at the officers club they had just arrested some filipino boy because he was sending paper plans to some person. he was explaining her that it really was not a war plan. they found out he had checked the book out of his library.
11:48 am
so, that is how close some of our planning was. and so she just thought he was wonderful. she came back to america after pearl harbor single-handedly resurrecting this man into a military profit. reds and articles, and next thing you know he's all of the papers. this isn't-you saw it coming, the guy who said the japanese are going to do this. by the way, his plans as indicated, were very similar to what the japanese actually did. he earned high marks as different military profit. enamored by him and actually wrote the basis of a screenplay. well, the valor of ignorance was so popular in england the former head of the u.s. army shown on the left bought every copy that
11:49 am
harper and brothers published. he bought the mall. although once he to get his hands on in england. he bought them all and handed them out to everybody he knew. then he rode home release saying, would you please write something for the british similar to what you have britain and america. that is the book "the day of the saxon." he wrote this. this book really did not take the interest of the japanese. it took the interest of the germans. so this book was translated into german. the kaiser loved it. and homer lea had himself an international reputation as i indicated. well, okay. homer lea dies in 1912. kind of battle on and off for control of china and tell the guys in the 1920's. his books still out of print and he gets resurrected during world war two. k'ang yu-wei team, meanwhile, he
11:50 am
was -- his family keeps his ashes. he left that he wanted to be buried in china. his wife never made any effort that i know of to have his ashes taken to china. the wife died and was cremated. he never had enough money or where with all to go to china. well, in 1949 the china mainland became giant -- communist. the idea is a wash. so when certain papers were donated to the destitution and stanford university in late 19681 of the conditions of donating the papers by the family is, can you please arrange to have his ashes taken to china to be welcome on the mainland was out of the question. for those of you know he knew homer.
11:51 am
so, when the government is oppressed and time on for possibly taking the ashes of this to bring them over. still a big military ceremony to take his ashes. entered in taiwan, and the plan at the time, at least according to have is that when the two chinas or reunited he would take the ashes over to the mainland. as it stands, of course, chiang kai-shek is long since gone, and the family of homer lea would very much like to see his ashes taken back to the mainland. so, that said, that is my quick overview of home relief. if you are interested in someone like that who shaped world events of the he has been largely forgotten since then i would recommend it. now, what i want to also add is this. mine is the second book ever published about homer lea.
11:52 am
the fact that the first was written in the 1980's and the author has since died, that book is a good starting point, and using the paper is donated to the hoover institute. prior to the 1960's there was never enough material to think about writing a scholarly biography of homer. so, i have been working on this off and on for a number of years. where my book transcends and bypasses the one in the 80's is i have the advantage of having used sources from the internet. so each week that goes by, each month that goes by like low picking fruit new material may come to the forefront. i have also had the advantage in running into some of the family of homer lea who have shared information with me. i would like to give you a quick anecdote about the trials and tribulations of writing about this. when a homer lea was alive he was called an international man
11:53 am
of mystery for a reason. so much misrepresentation and exaggeration about who he was and what he did while alive, it was near impossible to separate fact from fiction. that was a huge historical task. here is a quick anecdote. i was fortunate enough to get some letters that the sister of homer lea route for an article in the 1940's for life magazine that was never published talking about some aspects of his life. his sister wrote about how he was involved in a duel. right before his first book cannot. i just showed you, his first book came out in 1908. i looked to the newspapers that i had access to from california and los angeles at the time and could find nothing. a bit, okay. he must've done this to the early 1908. so i wrote that section into manuscript. i had information no one had ever seen before. i was calling to corner the
11:54 am
market on new authoritative and homer lea information. a few months later the library of congress which is digitizing newspapers as we speak digitize the los angeles "herald". lo and behold a see a front-page story on homer lea having a dual, but it's in 1906, 1908 and had nothing to do with his sister's recollection. her memory was completely a skewed. so, it gives you pause for reflection, and you want to use a torch of resources in the document. in this case i determined that the newspaper published the day after the event was much more authoritative and accurate than the sister's memory 40 years later. challenges of sorting through the makes. if you were to go on the web and read in the article today, anything published about homer lea, a certain percentage of it is going to be inaccurate and drawn.
11:55 am
case closed. case closed. that is the challenge. this book here, at least as far as i can tell, was the most accurate and authoritative biography. and so travel entertain any questions or comments if anybody has any at this point. yes, sir. >> take a civic life, academic exercise on his part or did he envisioned himself as a great savior in response? what precipitated that? >> question. an homer lea being a student of world events. it was the rush of japanese war. the japanese fought the russians
11:56 am
in 1904 and 1905. as soon as that war was over and homer lea understood, especially with contacts and connections with the past of japanese expansion is misleading. for those of you that don't have encyclopedic memories of japanese history, in 189495 there was a japanese war with the japanese thought the chinese which was really the start of japanese expansionist. ten years later the japanese fought the russians. homer lea simply connect the dots. homer lea also was a social darwin. he believed in survival of the fittest, preserving the anglo-saxon race. his view, a global view, we have to keep american and british ties together. he saw china as the counterbalance white to japanese and russian expansionism in asia. he saw the british and the americans formulating the bond
11:57 am
with china as a counterweight. he did see things geopolitically because he was a student of the japanese war and global events. and other questions, comments? yes. that is a very easy story to tell. and i was a graduate student in the late 1970's and was in the library looking for their hard copy papers. i came across a full page obituary of this general who looked like a kid, glowing headlines and his contributions. was hard to fathom what believe. it is incredible. and since i did not really ever know much about him, at that point i started looking for something authoritative for good that i could rely on for a biography. since 1979 comment, but cannot a few months ago i could never
11:58 am
find any. i took it upon myself to do this. i did a dissertation at kansas state university in the mid 80's. i used to work as an army historian for the army center, working for the pentagon. about ten years ago i had a little extra time on my hand. i said i'm going to dust this off and try to get back into it and fix it up. so there we are. ten years later. additional research. yes. >> the valor of ignorance, heavy rhetoric, pretty good work, pretty good thinking. >> nothing else like it to compare it to. unless you want to read something from the 1890's, if you are a progressive modern a military officer and served thirsting for things that can help challenger in aircraft, this is set. i mean, it was not written by an american military officer.
11:59 am
that is the catch. he did his homework, got on a mule and when all over the mountains licking and photography, the geography of how you actually would launch an invasion. he did not just sit back. he looked at the land. the u.s. army today, look at the land. they would love homer lea. wow, i want to thank you all very much and that concludes. if you have any questions or comments please get in touch with me at a later date. [applause] >> this event was part of the annual association of the u.s. army meeting. for more information visit a u. s. eight got org. ..

106 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on